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Caring for a Three Legged Dog or Cat

Tripawds is the place to learn how to care for a three legged dog or cat, with answers about dog leg amputation, and cat amputation recovery from many years of member experiences.
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Remembering Killer
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Forum Posts: 1216
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21 January 2010 - 5:08 pm
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Martie has been posting about her rottie Killer who has had really bad hip dysplasia.  She has posted under Size Matters under the title Hip Dysplasia.  You can read her story there.  Sadly, Killer was never going to be able to walk again and she had to let her go.  Please join me in expressing sympathy for Killer and supporting Martie in her grief.

Killer sounded like she was a wonderful dog and I know you will miss her terribly.  My prayers are with you. It was easy to tell how much she was loved.

Debra & Angel Emily

Debra & Emily, a five year old doberman mix, who was diagnosed with an osteosaecoma. She had a right rear leg amputation on May 19, 2009. On November 10, 2009 she earned her wings and regained her fourth leg.

Here and Now


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21 January 2010 - 5:11 pm
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Our hearts go out to Martie. May Killer run free of pain forever.

My heart lives at Rainbow Bridge
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21 January 2010 - 7:06 pm
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Killer joins our angel heros. Forever in our hearts.

Shanna & Spirit Trouble ~ Trouble gained her wings 3/16/2011, a 27 1/2 month cancer survivor, tail wagging. RIP sweetheart, you are my heart and soul.  Run free at Rainbow Bridge.
The November Five - Spirits Max, Cherry, Tika, Trouble & Nova. 11/2008 - 3/2013 An era ends as Queen Nova crossed the Bridge.

Arizona
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21 January 2010 - 7:46 pm
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I am so sorry to read that Killer lost the battle,  Rest in Peace Killer.

Jo Ann & Tasha

Tasha 8 years old, First cancer diagnosis 6/26/09, Last cancer diagnosis 9/26/09, Amputation 10/01/09, Loving our girl moment by moment.

Tasha lost her battle and became my Angel on May 4 2011. Forever in my heart….

Houston area
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21 January 2010 - 8:07 pm
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Thank you all so much. I know that many of you have been through the same thing and know the toll that this grief takes, and we never really get over these dogs, they are part of our lives forever. And I know that you are trying to give me the opportunity to open up and deal with some of these feelings, so I will take that opportunity.

Killer was so loving and gentle with us, yet a fierce protector of our home. I read somewhere that rottweilers were "gentle giants", and that was Killer. That bark sounded so frightening, yet she was also a big clown who played hide and seek, ate all my marigolds and would do anything for a handful of walnuts. Once she knew you, she would come for petting, and then, if you stopped, reach up and grab your hand with that big paw and nudge you until you pet her some more. If she could get away with it, she would start working her way into your lap, all 75 pounds of her.

Our cleaning lady was terrified of Killer, and would make me lock Killer outside on the days she came (and I was at work). Killer would get really upset at being locked out and dig under the gate, go around the house, and sit at the front door wanting to get back in, virtually trapping the poor woman, who would call me at work and ask me what to do.

Killer loved belly rubs, apples, drinking water out of a hose--you know all of it, your dogs have been the same. She would run from the vacuum cleaner, and hide under the bed when she knew we were mad at her. We got "scat mats" to keep her off the good sofa, and she knocked them off somehow and got on the sofa anyway. She was kicked out of obedience training for going after the trainer's yappy lap dog who kept yapping at her.

You know Killer was a rescue in a way. My spouse ran across her one summer day back in 2003 chained up in the back of a pickup on a 105-degree South Texas day with a collar that had spikes on the inside. Somehow he talked these three guys into selling Killer to him, and then he had to convince me to let him bring her home, I had never had a big dog and was afraid of them. So Killer came home, and captured my heart.

And then to get cancer, and fight it, and win, only to be unable to walk....You know I do feel very guilty that I didn't go more at the end, the vets were disagreeing, one saying that it was hopeless and my dog was suffering--osteosarcoma and hip dysplasia, she said, that was a distinction without a differnce---one saying that more acupuncture and water therapy could cure her, one noncommittal. I just couldn't bear to see Killer unable to get up, unable to walk, and crying all through the night even though she was maxed out on tramadol and rimadyl.

Now I miss her so much that I don't want to come home from work. I miss her at the door when I turn the key, and begging for (and getting) part of my dinner, sitting outside with me by the pool (but never jumping in), coming into the office and sitting on my feet while I am on the computer, like now. Settling in for the night at the side of my bed. I will never have any of those things again, and my beautiful girl is gone. The house is quiet without her, and the world a lonelier place. I dread going to the vet to pick up her ashes, because that will seal the deal, that will say irrevocably that Killer is gone. Thanks for letting me talk about this. I am still in a deep grief, but I do want to share the wonderful things about Killer with those who understand.

Las Vegas, Nevada
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21 January 2010 - 8:47 pm
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Please, please, please don't feel guilty. You honestly did all you could do.  Just know you did the right thing.  Your heart is breaking and our hearts are breaking for you.  We understand how sad you must be.  Each day will get just a tiny, tiny bit better.  It's so hard right now.  But please don't beat yourself up. 

Your story of Killer is wonderful.  Of course, she was a rescue!  You rescued her from a horrible life it sounds like.  Can you imagine selling your baby?  I can't.  I'm glad those 3 guys took your offer.  I'm sure she felt like she walked into paradise with your family! 

Big dogs are so great.   I personally love big, black dogs.

You showed a lot of love and you got a lot of love in return.  I'm just so sorry for your heartache and terrible loneliness.  

Please come by here anytime and talk about your adorable Killer girl.  

Please stay strong and remember she is pain free now and in a better place.

- HUGS and Love Barks - 

Her Retired AvatarComet - 1999 to 2011

She departed us unexpectedly  January 23, 2011 at the age of 12 1/2.

She was born with a deformed front leg and a tripawd all of her life.

Winnipeg
Forum Posts: 1349
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21 January 2010 - 9:31 pm
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Martie

You did everything you could and more. The pain was not getting better. I had to let Tazzie go in December when I saw the pain could only get worse. He was not incapacitated but things were starting to change quickly. Someone on this site today or yesterday mentioned that spine mets can't always be detected by x-ray. I guess that is why they sometimes use CT scans. So don't go kick yourself for keeping the cancer at bay only for Killer to develop bad hip displaysia. It can be hard to know for sure what is the final deciding factor with some of our dogs - so many things are going on.

I definitely will look at Rotties differently since "meeting" so many on this website. I guess the few I have met at the park have been really nice, but I have no personal experience with the breed. Okay, now I have heaps of experience: Shilo, Raven, etc. and they all seem very sweet and smart.

That is a great story about how you rescued Killer. Thank goodness they sold her to you so she could have the wonderful life you have had together.

Try to take care of yourself. I know how hard and confusing it is when we lose our beloved friends.

The Rainbow Bridge



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21 January 2010 - 9:50 pm
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Marti, we hope that we can be there for you to provide some kind of comfort as your heart heals from losing Killer.

What a great life you gave her, and vice versa. To think of what might have happened to her, had your husband not come along at the right time, and been the kindhearted, thinking soul to change her life forever. The universe truly conspired to have you meet, to show you the depth of love and kindness in the most unlikely package. And to show Killer that humans are capable of so much more.

Losing our best friend is a difficult, rough time, oftentimes even harder than losing our human family members. Our dogs are so forgiving, so non-judgmental, the absolute embodiment of what humans wish they could be. The are just so much more enlightened than any human, I think.

Saying goodbye to a creature capable of nothing but pure love is devastating. You have every right to feel the way you do. Give it time. Come here to talk about Killer. Share your happy memories together whenever you feel like crying. Always look back on your time together with love and not regret, and you too will be that much closer to attaining the same level of compassion and enlightenment that Killer had. Life will get easier eventually, I promise.

Hang in there, and know that our hearts are with you.

It's better to hop on three legs than to limp on four.™
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Wesley Chapel, FL
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21 January 2010 - 10:00 pm
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Martie,

My heart is aching for you loss... I know you loved Killer so much... it showed in your posts... and how you adopted her from those three guys... It sounds like she had a wonderful life with you... lots of love, and many silly and sweet memories...

I know how hard it is for you right now... and when you get Killer's ashes, it will be like another blow to you... because it will definitely be final then. I hate that you have to feel the pain that I did... but that's why we are all here... to help each other, support each other... in the good times and the bad...

My thoughts and prayers are with you during this difficult time... Sending you a big hug!!!

Angel Jake's Mom

Jake, 10yr old golden retriever (fractured his front right leg on 9/1, bone biopsy revealed osteosarcoma on 9/10, amputation on 9/17) and his family Marguerite, Jacques and Wolfie, 5yr old german shepherd and the newest addition to the family, Nala, a 7mth old Bengal mix kittie. Jake lost his battle on 11/9/2009, almost 8 weeks after his surgery. We will never forget our sweet golden angel… http://jakesjou.....ipawds.com ….. CANCER SUCKS!

Forum Posts: 1216
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21 January 2010 - 10:07 pm
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Martie,

Please don't feel guilty.  You DID do everything you could for her.  Your story sounded so much like what happened to Emily and also to Jake that I was so surprised when your vet said the cancer had not spread to her spine.  As you know, we also thought we would have to put Emily to sleep because of hip dysplasia.  Truthfully, it did make it easier that it was the cancer.  No one wants to think their baby beat cancer only to lose to dysplasia but in both instances strong, independent, loving dogs are layed low.  The adequan shots were not working.  The acupuncture was not working.  Killer deserved more than a life of whimpering, unable to control her own bodily functions.  You had no choice.  You loved her enough to let her go. Period.  There was no other choice.  I would have done the exact same thing and as you read others' stories you will see that many of us have made that choice, if it can be called a choice.  When the spirit or the body can not carry on we love them enough to say goodbye for now.  

Killer sounds so sweet.  I laughed at the cleaning lady story.  Rotts have such a bad rep and can be so loving and loyal.  It sounds like you had a huge lap dog, too!

Please take care of yourself and remember to post.  The hard part is over for Killer.  She is running free without pain.  Your pain is just starting.  Know that all of are here for you.

Debra & Angel Emily

Debra & Emily, a five year old doberman mix, who was diagnosed with an osteosaecoma. She had a right rear leg amputation on May 19, 2009. On November 10, 2009 she earned her wings and regained her fourth leg.

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22 January 2010 - 7:28 am
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We're so sorry. Thank you for sharing your stories of Killer - I loved the cleaning lady story. Killer was a wonderful friend, and you both were so fortunate to find each other. Like Tazzie, I haven't known any Rottweilers (well, except for Carl, from the children's books my kids loved about him!), and feel like I've "met" some amazing rotties through tripods. We'll be keeping you in our hearts.
Holly and Holly's mom

Holly joined the world of tripawds on 12/29/2009. She has a big little sister, Zuzu, who idolizes Holly and tries to make all of her toys into tripawds in Holly's honor. And she's enjoying life one hop at a time!

http://anyemery.....ipawds.com

Orange County, CA
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22 January 2010 - 9:34 am
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Martie, I'm so sorry to hear about Killer.  Not to repeat what everyone else is saying, but I also loved the cleaning lady story!  I also know what it's like to have a 70 lb lap dog, and I wouldn't want it any other way!  I'm glad you have such wonderful memories of her.

Diane

Livermore CA
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22 January 2010 - 9:16 pm
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Martie, I can't add much to what everyone else has said, but I'm here to support you too.  I love big dogs, especially the ones who think they belong on your lap.  Your love for Killer shows in your words and all of us know the grief you're feeling right now.  You were right to release her from her pain filled body--bless you for having so much compassion and putting her ahead of yourself.

I hope  you come back and share more stories.  May they bring you peace.

Mary

Cemil and mom Mary, Mujde and Radzi….appreciating and enjoying Today

Cemil's blog

Northern Indiana
Forum Posts: 356
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22 January 2010 - 9:58 pm
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Martie,

Please don't have any regrets.....I read through your posting and your words were filled with love and the wonderful life you had with Killer!  Don't ever forget that........it is what really matters!

I know you are filled with sadness now, it is a horrible ache that comes from the depths of your heart, so just know that we all send you love and care as you grieve.

Ginny & Angel Paris

Grateful for every moment we had with Paris…..no regrets!

Honoring her life by opening our hearts & home to Addy!

Houston area
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28 January 2010 - 7:14 pm
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I want to thank you all for your kind words and support. I picked up Killer's ashes from the vet today and it was as hard as I thought it would be. I had put it off for about a week, really dreading it, but finally realized that it was time to bring my girl home. The "regular" vet who euthanized Killer told me again that she believed that Killer would never walk again, and I couldn't handle Killer on my own--and I'm sure she was right. The oncologist told me that she had had to euthanize her own dog who had cancer, not for the cancer, but for similar mobility issues. All of it is true, I'm sure they are all right, but I still miss Killer so very much. Most of my family has lived in the same place for many years, and they all bury their dogs and cats on their land. I will be moving back to San Antonio in a little over a year, so I had my baby cremated so that I could take her back home with me. This living arrangement has been really hard on Killer too, my husband in San Antonio and me in Houston due to a job move. He used to drive Killer from San Antonio to Houston for chemo, until we bought a house in the Houston area and Killer moved in with me. Unfortunately, I wasn't physically able to handle a dog of her size, or things might have been different. But we never can know. Once they are gone, it's like a big shift in time, and everything becomes the past, all that's left are our memories. Someone else on here was writing about being afraid of the end, and everyone was telling them to forget that and enjoy the time they have with their dog. Very, very true words. I believe that the cancer had spread to Killer's spine, as a couple of folks said, but I will never really know. Again, thanks to all of you, it's been a very emotional day, so I can't write much more now.

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